Even the most talented public speaker can get nervous about giving the best man’s speech at a wedding. After all, it is quite a big deal. Being the best man is one of the biggest honours you can receive at a wedding, and you’re expected to give a speech that respects that honour, makes the crowd laugh and cry, and pays tribute to the special couple on the most important day of their lives. The important thing to do when making a best man’s speech is to thank people for being there, describe your connection to the groom, and to make people laugh while avoiding any cringe-inducing comments. If you want to know how to write a moving and memorable best man’s speech, then see Step 1 to get started.
Be yourself and don't worry about giving some formal speech that doesn't reflect you. Though it's important to stick to some conventions, what's most important is that you stay true to your relationship with the groom — even if it's a PG-rated version of your relationship. You don't want to sound too stuffy or like someone who is nothing like you. At the end of the day, what's most important is that you say some heartfelt words and stay true to yourself. For example, most best man speeches have a bit of humor in them for levity and to get the crowd going. But if this really isn't for you and making jokes just feels too forced, you don't have to follow that convention. On the other hand, if you're known for your humor and sarcasm, you don't have to force yourself to be overly sentimental. Just a few words of honest sentiment would get the message across without making you feel like you're faking it. If public speaking is not for you, don't be nervous about it. You can even make a joke about how much you love public speaking, or about how this is the groom's way of punishing you/getting you back for that time you made him push your car up a hill.
Keep it short. You don't want to just say "Cheers" or deliver a one-liner, but you also don't want to ramble on and on; this day is not about you. Your speech should be long enough to say what you want to say and no longer. As a rule of thumb, try to keep the toast between 2 and 4 minutes; most people won’t have patience for anything over 5 minutes. The groom and bride may even have an idea of how long they want speeches to be, so don't be afraid of asking them. Though your speech should be well prepared in advance, take a look at the crowd; if people are particularly restless or eager to drink and dance, then you may want to cut out that second anecdote you weren't sure about. Though it's typical for the best man and maid of honor to give a speech, there may be other speeches given out there. The father of the bride sometimes speaks, and there may be two maids of honor and thus, two speeches. And maybe even drunk Uncle Bertie will try to say a few words. If there are a number of speeches, then it's especially important to keep it short so the crowd doesn't spend all night listening to people talk.
Write and practice your speech in advance. The sooner you get it written, the more time you'll have to practice and perfect it, which will boost your confidence when you have to get up in front of everybody. Don't think that you'll just gather some liquid courage and start spouting things off about the newly married couple. In fact, this is one of the worst ideas you can have, because you may end up saying something you deeply regret or may just completely lose your train of thought. It's important to be well-prepared in advance so your big speech goes off without a hitch. Don't be embarrassed about keeping a written version of your speech with you when you go up there during your big moment. Even if you don't use it as a reference, just having it there can make you feel more confident about not making any mistakes.
Look for inspiration. If you're really struggling, there's no shame in going on YouTube and checking out the thousands of great best men speeches that people have videotaped and posted there. You may get an idea that you wouldn't have thought of otherwise when you sit down to write your speech. You can also search for written versions of speeches on-line, or even ask friends or family members who had given those speeches if they can give you a copy of what they'd written or even give you some words of advice.